A Comparison Between Steel Winch Cables and Synthetic Ropes

30 November 2016
 Categories: Construction & Contractors, Blog

Winches are available with cables that are made from different materials, such as steel or synthetic ropes. Which material is better for your needs as a new contractor? Here are some of the factors that you can base upon to select the right rope for the winch that you wish to buy.


Steel cables are usually much heavier than synthetic ropes are. You should therefore buy a winch with a synthetic cable in case you would like to minimise the weight that you truck will be carrying as you ferry and offload different materials at the construction sites where you will be operating. Buy a winch with a steel cable in case you have no concerns about the weight of that winch assembly.


Winch ropes or cables can break for several reasons, such as normal wear and tear. Steel cables pose more safety hazards in case they break under load. This is because the immense energy stored within the cable will suddenly be released and the cable will flail about. Anything or anyone in its path is likely to suffer damage or serious injuries. Synthetic ropes don't present serious safety risks once they fail under load. This is because the synthetic rope won't flail in the same way that a steel cable will.


Steel cables are usually more affordable when compared to synthetic ropes. This means that a winch having a steel cable will be cheaper than a similar winch that has a synthetic rope. Consider your budget and buy the winch whose rope or cable doesn't exceed what you are willing to spend.

Ease of Use

One must be very careful when using a winch with a synthetic rope. This is because the rope requires special handling since any sharp objects that touch its surface can easily damage it. For instance, one must avoid anchoring the synthetic rope on a metal with a sharp edge because the rope is likely to break. However, steel cables are tough and can withstand any harsh field conditions that they are subjected to. You should therefore assess the conditions under which you intend to use your new winch so that you select a rope or cable that will serve you under those conditions.

Think carefully about the factors above as you shop for a winch for your construction company. Involve a winch expert in case you remain undecided about which rope or cable will best serve your needs.